Archives for July 2008

See you in September (2009)

Today was my last day of work before maternity leave. I am using some vacation time now until the middle of August, or whenever this baby decides to arrive, whichever is first. I’m hoping it’s the baby (speaking of which, make your guess as to when this little one will drop here).

I know that I’ll be very busy really soon. At the moment, though, I’m feeling sort of nervous. What will I do with my newfound free time? How will we cope with the drop in income while I’m off? I can’t remember what I did last time I was on maternity leave. I remember that all my days were occupied, but I don’t really remember how. Plus, I had only myself and a 4-month-old to entertain, no preschoolers in tow.

I also feel a vaguely unsettling feeling leaving my job behind. Will it be there waiting for me? As I cool my heels over in baby land for 13 months, will they decide they don’t need me anymore? And then what?

I hope that this kid arrives soon and saves me from my pregnancy-induced delusions and anxiety. Then I’ll be too busy changing diapers and attempting to load up the car and the kids to worry about how I’ll spend my days.

Home Stretch

I am finishing up my last week of work, and I am eager to be done. We’re also finishing up Hannah’s swimming lessons this week, and Jon’s finishing up his big work project at the moment. We’re all completing the things that we need to complete so that we’re not scrambling when the baby comes.

Speaking of which, I am very ready now for this baby to come out. I’m full term, and I’m sort of tired of being pregnant. So, while I am thrilled that you’re all responding to my little baby guessing game, I would like to remind you that babies do sometimes come early, especially second babies. And your positive thoughts and predictions in that direction are appreciated.

Because I will totally blame you all when I’m 5 days overdue and can no longer make it upstairs to my own bed. 😉

36 Weeks

I am now 36 weeks pregnant, which means that I have just under a month to go. And I’m feeling it. Carting this baby around is becoming increasingly difficult. Heartburn, aches and pains, out-of-control crying jags, this whole process is just one beautiful miracle. OK, really, it is a miracle, but it just isn’t always all that much fun.

We had another midwife appointment today. The little guy’s head has dropped into my pelvis, and the midwife today said that he would be not too big, ‘a good size’ for me. His heartrate is now 140 beats per minute, and my fundal height is 34 cm – it gets a big shorter once the baby’s dropped. I was sent home with my medical records so that I can take them to the hospital and the midwives don’t need to track them down if things progress quickly. By all accounts, I’m in the home stretch, although this could still go for 5 for weeks.

That’s the latest update. Now that you have all the latest news, make a prediction in my little on-line baby pool. Seriously. Because the lack of participation (other than a certain brother-in-law angling for prize money) is causing my hormonal self to feel rather unloved. I’ve put my guess out there, now it’s your turn!

Otherwise, I’m actually doing pretty good. I’m down to my last few days of work, I’ll be on leave starting August 1. Hopefully, I’ll get at least a few days to rest at home and gather my resources before Jacob makes his appearance. And, as is customary we’ve taken a snapshot so that you can see what I’m looking like these days:

36 week belly

Hazard a Guess?

Does anyone want to make a prediction about baby stats? We already know that this little one is a boy, but we obviously don’t know when he will be born, or how big he will be. If you want to throw your hat into the baby pool ring, leave a comment and I’ll add your vote. Read on for some details to help with your predictions.

It's a boy!
It’s a boy!

My due date is sometime between Aug. 15 (based on the standard dates) and Aug. 19 (based on the 8-week ultrasound, confirming what I’d already suspected). Of course Hannah was 6 weeks early due to an amniotic infection, and so that pregnancy offers no help with your predictions. Hannah weighed only 5lbs, 4oz at birth, but was around 9lbs on her due date. My midwives estimate she would have been around 8lbs 8oz if she’d gone to term. I weighed 7lbs 5oz and Jon weighed 8lbs 4oz. And for those of you who aren’t familiar with Imperial measurements (as I wasn’t until I had a baby myself), there are 16oz in 1lb. 😉

Here are the predictions to date:

Laura – Aug. 6, 7lbs 5oz
Amber – Aug. 8, 8lbs 11oz
Hannah – Aug. 9, 8lbs
Ted – Aug. 14, 8lbs 4oz, 21″
Amy – Aug. 15, 8lbs 1oz
Lisa – Aug. 15, 4pm, 7lbs 11oz
Danny – Aug. 16
(Danny’s the master – he predicted that Hannah would be 6 weeks early)
Heather – Aug. 17, 8lbs 2oz, 19.5″
Margaret – Aug. 18, 8lbs 14oz
Christy – Aug. 20, 7lbs 15oz
Gretchen – Aug. 20, 8lbs 8oz, 20″
James – Aug. 21, 8lbs 9oz
Laurie – Aug. 23, 8lbs 13oz
Jon – Aug. 24, 9lbs 2oz
Ludi – Aug. 25, 8lbs 6oz

What if it Hurts?

I’ve never really worried much about the pain of childbirth. The first time around, I sort of told myself that it shouldn’t last all that long in the grand scheme of things, and then it would be over and I would have a baby for a very long time. In fact, I was vaguely baffled when many of the women in our childbirth class expressed fear about pain in labour. Wasn’t the baby that came afterward a much bigger deal, all things considered?

Of course I gave birth really early on the first go around, and I didn’t really have time to worry. I didn’t expect to go into labour, I hadn’t given it much thought. Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition and all that. I do remember feeling as if I had completely deluded myself when things started to get uncomfortable. “What was I thinking when I got into this mess?” I asked myself. I sort of changed my mind at that point, but it was too late.

This time around, I’ve concerned that I would go into preterm labour. I’m almost 36 weeks now, though, and this baby shows no signs of going anywhere. Those fears have vanished, we have all of the gear set up and ready to go, and now I’m suddenly concerned. I remember that labour sort of hurt, or was at least pretty uncomfortable. I remember other women on the delivery ward wailing and screaming and carrying on. I remember thinking that I didn’t want to do that again in the days and weeks that followed. And now I have to.

The only way out of this mess is through it, I’m afraid. The alternative to labour is major abdominal surgery, and I surely don’t want that. Even knowing that I still feel afraid of the pain, though. I have become that woman that I so arrogantly felt was worried about the wrong thing. I keep tellling myself that once I’m in the situation, my fears and concerns won’t matter, I’ll just do the work I have to do. That’s probably true. But right now I’m having second thoughts, and I’d like to reconsider this whole pregnancy / baby deal.

Although, maybe I will get lucky. It feels as if Jacob is attempting to make his escape through my belly button. Maybe he’ll finally do it one of these days. A girl can dream, right?

Consumption

I try not to go overboard buying stuff. I try to avoid communicating to Hannah that consumption is the road to happiness. I do not indulge in retail therapy as a means to get through my days, being more of a compulsive saver than a spender.

And yet, my 3-year-old owns 3 bathing suits. I bet that a minority of children in the world even own one bathing suit, and my child has 3. It’s a little bit embarassing.

It’s true that I also own 3 bathing suits, although one is a massive black maternity number, and one is a large post-baby suit. The go-to bathing suit, the one I generally wear when I’m not pregnant and/or recovering, is the same one that I bought for my honeymoon. So, at least all of my swimsuits are different sizes. Although that’s a bit of a justification, too.

And don’t get me started on the number of plastic buckets my kid has. Or the pairs of shoes. Or stuffed animals. This preschooler comes with more stuff than whole villages in the developing world. What the answer is, I don’t know. Hannah has lots of people who love her, and so her material needs are met amply, and then some, even by the standards of our culture. At moments, though, I feel overwhelmed and concerned about the message my little one’s getting. Oh Lord, won’t you buy me a Mercedes Benz?

Ask me About Breastfeeding

Today, I got big news. After approximately 18 months of work, I have been accredited as a La Leche League Leader. What does this mean? This means that I know more about breastfeeding than I could have imagined there was to know, before I tried it myself. It also means that, on a volunteer basis, I will be leading meetings and helping moms over the phone. Basically, I will offer information and support so that other women, and their babies, can have successful nursing experiences.

As part of the training I’ve done a ton of reading in the past 6 months or so. On a personal level, I feel like I’m very well-equipped for the new baby phase this time around. I’m hoping to make it to term this time around and avoid the Special Care Nursery, which should make it easier to get off to a good start in any case.

Speaking of which, I’ve passed the 34 week mark, so I’ve officially made it farther in this pregnancy than I did with Hannah. At my midwife appointment yesterday the little guy was riding high, showing no signs of going anywhere soon. My fundal height was 33.5 cm, and the heart rate was 140 bpm. Here’s how I’m looking these days:

34 week belly

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